BRAIDWOOD, Ill.– Fish, family fun and fundraising were the predominant focuses at Exelon’s 15th annual Fishing for a Cure charity bass tournament held Saturday on Braidwood Lake. In the end, the biggest winner was Easter Seals Joliet Region, which will receive $43,761 in proceeds raised at the tournament.
Eighty two-person teams from around the Midwest competed in the tournament sponsored annually by Exelon Generation’s Braidwood Generating Station. Mitch DeLand and Danny Marcolini of Plainfield, Ill., captured first place and the $4,000 top prize with their three-fish total of 10.74 lbs. Coming in second was the team of Chuck and Chris Lide of Braidwood, Ill., whose catch for the day totaled 9.94 lbs. and netted the duo $2,500. Taking home the third place trophy and $1,000 for a three-fish total of 9.36 lbs. was Edward and Kristen Gad, also of Braidwood. Teams placing fourth though 10th place split the remaining $2,500 in prize money.
Jim Horvath of Crete, Ill., set a tournament record of 12.43 lbs. for the largest catfish. The previous record of 7.84 lbs. was set in 2014. The biggest bass at 4.3 lbs. was reeled in by Edward Gad of Braidwood.
“We are honored to have been chosen as this year’s charity,” said Easter Seals Joliet Region Chief Executive Officer Deb Condotti. “The proceeds from the event will help greatly with our agency’s pediatric services.”
Forty young anglers from age two to 12 competed in their own fishing derby at the Godley Park District pond Saturday. Vinny Malinowski of Elwood, Ill., took first place in the 5-years-old and under category, with Mason Gardner of Custer Park, Ill., taking second. Angelina Lopez of Plainfield took first place in the 6- to 8-year-old category with second place going to Sam Racutt of Joliet, Ill., and third place going to Liberty Gardner of Custer Park, Ill. Two 10-year-olds took the honors in the 9- to 12-year-old category. Myles Gardner of Custer Park took first place and Makenna Boyle of Morris, Ill., took second. Lopez also snared the biggest fish, while Liberty Gardner reeled in the tournament’s smallest fish.
More than 40 volunteers including employees and family members from Braidwood Station and members of the Reed Custer High School Casting Comets staffed the event. Braidwood Station employees Brian Daniels, Steve Friddle and Mike Kap served as weigh-in officials. ESPN’s Chauncey Niziol served as the tournament host.
Several local businesses helped sponsor the event including Allegra Coal City Printing, Berkot’s Super Foods, D Construction and Monical’s Pizza.
Braidwood Generating Station, located about 60 miles south of Chicago, generates nearly 2,400 megawatts of carbon-free electricity, enough to power more than 2 million homes. Approximately 90 percent of the carbon-free power in Illinois is produced by Exelon's six nuclear facilities. Join us on twitter and You Tube.